Director, Office of Grants & Contracts (Grants Officer)

CUNY School of Professional Studies   New York, NY   Full-time     Education
Posted on February 5, 2024
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 Functional Title: Director, Office of Grants & Contracts (Grants Officer) 

RF Job Code: 9000 

Salary Range/ Hourly Rate, or “Commensurate with Experience”): $115K - $130K

Part Time/Full Time:  FT 

Hours: 35/week 

Program: SPS Office of Grants & Contracts 

Location: 119 West 31st Street 

About the CUNY School of Professional Studies 

For over 15 years, the CUNY School of Professional Studies (CUNY SPS) has been leading online education in New York. Notable for offering the most online bachelor’s and master’s degree options at the City University of New York, and for serving transfer students as the University system’s only undergraduate all-transfer college, CUNY SPS meets the needs of adults who wish to finish a bachelor’s degree, progress from an associate’s degree, earn a master’s degree or certificate in a specialized field, and advance in the workplace or change careers. 

The School’s growth has been remarkable, with twenty-four degrees launched since 2006. Enrollment has risen by more than 30% in the last four years to over 4,000 students in the credit-bearing programs.  Thousands more are enrolled in non-degree and grant-funded workplace learning programs. In addition, the school has an active alumni network and has established the CUNY SPS Foundation, which offers multiple scholarship opportunities to current students. 

CUNY SPS has consistently been named by U.S. News & World Report as one of the country’s top online institutions. This year, the School was ranked in the top 2% in the nation on the publisher’s list of the 2021 Best Online Bachelor’s Degree Programs

Within CUNY SPS, the Office of Grants and Contracts functions as the administrative unit responsible for managing applications and securing funding from governmental, corporate, non-profit, and foundation sources. This office is instrumental in guiding the SPS community through the processes of proposal preparation, submission, and subsequent administration of these grants. It offers a suite of services, encompassing the identification of potential funding opportunities, oversight of the application process, ensuring adherence to both internal and external guidelines, and the management of awarded funds. Additionally, the office acts as a liaison between the SPS community and funding entities, providing essential support in communication and negotiation, while also ensuring compliance with legal and ethical standards. Through workshops and training, it further enhances the community's grant-related skills, thereby bolstering the school’s capacity to successfully secure and manage external funding in alignment with its broader mission and goals. 

Duties and Responsibilities: 

Directing the CUNY SPS Office of Grants and Contracts and reporting to the Associate Dean for Administration & Finance, the Director will oversee the staff of the Office of Grants and Contracts and: 

  • Provide leadership and vision to staff and faculty involved in review, approval, negotiation and administration of research and training proposals and NYC/NYS MOUs.
  • Act as the primary liaison between the school and RFCUNY, the CUNY Office of General Counsel, the CUNY Budget Office, and other organizations or offices related to sponsored program administration.
  • Supervise Grants Office staff to ensure administration, compliance, and documentation of all sponsored programs.
  • Support proposal preparation and coordination for individual faculty members, staff, and teams through grants consultation and searches.
  • Build faculty and staff capacity to create competitive funding proposals by implementing professional development activities (including grant-writing workshops).
  • Research and disseminate external funding opportunities to the campus community.
  • Maintain database of all grants and contracts, proposals, and key relationships with sponsors and other organizations.
  • Provide administrative oversight and advice to SPS Program Directors within the Office of Professional Education and Workplace Learning (PEWL) including budget management, procurement, personnel management, and other operational troubleshooting for RFCUNY administered MOUs.
  • Update policies and procedures to reflect changes to sponsor, CUNY, RFCUNY, or SPS policies or guidance.
  • Liaise with sponsor program officers, as needed, for questions related to all phases of proposal submission and grant administration.
  • Serve as the designated Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR)
  • Serve as the institutional point of contact for internal funding competitions from PSC CUNY and the CUNY Office of Research.
  • Oversee the management of the school’s discretionary accounts held at RFCUNY.
  • Contribute as a strategic member of the Dean’s Senior Staff, consulting with administrators and faculty on matters of significance.
  • Provide expert guidance on all stages of proposal development, including:
  • Ensuring that proposal goals and activities are aligned with funding agency mission;
  • Assisting with preparation of non-technical sections of proposals including institutional profile, facilities and library resources, and prior funding information;
  • Facilitating institutional support for specific proposal initiatives from relevant offices and units;
  • Providing detailed review and recommendations for all proposals under development;
  • Interfacing with external partners from cultural, scientific, and community organizations to develop multi-sector initiatives that can attract funding support.



Bachelor's Degree and eight years' related experience required. 


  • Master’s degree or higher.
  • Excellent written communication skills.
  • Five years of prior research administration experience in higher education.
  • Wide-ranging curiosity and ability to encourage intellectual exploration in others.
  • Ability to develop and present programs and/or workshops related to grants.
  • Record of success in helping academic applicants win grants from federal and other agencies.
  • Experience working with New York City agencies to provide workforce training services and knowledge of the NYC/CUNY MOU process.
  • Commitment to diversity and inclusion in all aspects of institutional life.

Additional Notes 
Applicants should submit a cover letter and resume for consideration.  

Candidates should be prepared to participate in a budget analysis exercise as part of the interview process.     

This is a full-time hybrid position, requiring in office (on-campus) attendance 7 out of 10 days, or 70% RTO.  Details on benefits can be viewed here: 

The Research Foundation of the City of New York & Diversity 

As a matter of policy and conviction the Research Foundation of the City University of New York attempts, in all personnel activities, to ensure equal employment opportunity for employees and applicants for employment whatever their race, creed, color, ethnic origin, religion, sex, gender identity, marital status, partnership status, caregiver status, age, citizenship or national origin, sexual orientation, veteran status, genetic information, disabilities or any other protected characteristics under applicable law. This applies to recruiting new employees including advertising, interviewing, work assignment, compensation and benefits, selection for training, promotion, demotion, transfer, layoff, or termination.    

Diversity is a core value at the Office of Professional Education and Workplace Learning (PEWL) at the CUNY School of Professional Studies (CUNY SPS). We are passionate about building and sustaining an inclusive and equitable working and learning environment for all students, staff, and faculty and believe every member on our team enriches our diversity by exposing us to a broad range of ways to understand and engage with the world, identify challenges, and to discover, design and deliver solutions.